TDN World Desk: Who to believe it is up to you. In a time when right-wing slanted journalists and few Hindu nationalists politicians are putting the dagger of blame over the Tablighi Jamaat, a panel of about 400 scientists say there is no evidince to suggest the claim that the Jaamat congregation in Nizamuddin markaz in Delhi was responsible for the continuous rise in Covid-19 cases in the country.
“The available data does not support such a speculation,” a statement from the scientists said.
Refuting the claim of media and politician Indian scientists’ response to Covid (ISRC) said,Over the past few days, several prominent media personalities and politicians have suggested that the primary blame for the continued growth of the COVID-19 epidemic in India lies with a Tablighi Jamaat event that was held in Delhi on March 13. The available data does not support such a speculation.”
Since last few days section of mainstream media as well as social media led vilifying campaign against the Muslim organization and projected its mistake as a deliberate attempt to spread coronavirus. That denigrating attempt even caused eviction and lynching. The scientists’ group has criticized such attempt of communalizing the pandemic.
“We strongly condemn any attempt to communalize the pandemic,” the scientists’ association ISRC stated.
“very important that we do not profile the cases on the basis of racial, religious and ethnic lines.” This is also reflected in the statement by the Ministry of Health which says “Do not label any community or area for spread of COVID-19,” the said further.
Defending Tablighi Jamaat the ISRC said, “Super spreader events have also taken place in other countries and even in India. For instance a single (now deceased) patient in Punjab led to the quarantining of 40,000 people from 20 villages in Punjab. Those who contract the virus in such an event, or spread it unintentionally, are themselves victims of the epidemic. They must not be demonized.”
“The actual number of infected across the country is believed to be far larger than the number of cases that have been confirmed so far. The effects of the Delhi event on the growth rate of the all India numbers may thus be significantly less than the numbers put out by MoHFW.”
The ISRC alsob urged the government to release deatiled data over the Covid-19 and make that data accessible for the public as well.
“The Government has not released data on how many tests were conducted among the attendees of this event and their contacts. Thus, we do not know how the fraction of tests that were found to be positive in this case compares to testing on the general population. We call on the government to release this data.
“We reiterate our call for the government to collect more data — by testing more — and to transparently share this data with the public, ” ISRC appeled to the government.